Interviewee:Aaron (Stix) Smith- Professional Drummer
Interview conducted via email on 6/11/16
At what age did you notice your interest in drumming; and what made you continue to pursue the title?
"At the age of 2. And I had a feeling that drumming was my calling!
How did you get started and who introduced you?
"My cousin would play drums at church and I used to watch him, so then I got started."
So with drumming what kind of services do you offer?
"The services I offer are; if you need a drummer for events, bands, and artists. If you need music, then I am hired to professionally play music for whomever hires me. I teach lessons, and sometimes get hired to teach drum master classes. I record for records and albums; tour and participate in studio sessions."
For most of your clients what do they typically look for, as in, what service is more common?
"Just learning their music!"
What do you like about the business?
"I like the fact that I am my own boss."
What are some challenges that may have been presented to you?
"Challenges is competition, staying relevent, and coming up with ways to evolve and stay in the music game."
So you went to Rio to teach lessons, could you tell me about the experience?
"The experience was great! Amazing musicians, amazing people who were hungry to learn more about drums! So many people came out! Over 200 people came out to hear me play drums!"
Do you ever get nervous on stage?
"Never get nervous!"
What age group is mostly represented?
" It just depends on musical skill level. It doesn't really have an age. But I'd say on average, 25 is usually when an elite musician starts his mainstreem career. Playing for the Beyonces' and Justin Biebers' of the Industy, but it can happen at an earlier age as well."
What are your goals for next year?
"My goal next year is to do a drum master class tour in multiple cities in Brazil."
And do you have any advice to give to people who may get into the music business?
" And my advice to anyone who wants to become a professional musician, is have tough skin. It is a very harsh environment and you must wear tough skin in order to survive and succeed. But it's possible."